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Trip Report: Part Deux

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Posted 08 June 2009 - 05:13 PM

Day Four: If there's one thing I've learned about visiting Disney Theme Parks, it's that being first at the front gate does not always mean you're first in line for the ride. Just ask the mad crowd following the CMs for Toy Story Midway Mania. First I got my FastPass, then hopped on the standby line, and as soon as the ride was done, it was time to do it again. And I got a better score in my second attempt than in my first. What I didn't get was the opportunity to meet Blixzit... again. I told him to meet me at TSMM, but he wasn't there. It's very hard to find a specific person when you're waiting at a popular attraction, so I checked the Tune-In Lounge, and he wasn't there either. This time, I left a message for him at Guest Services, doubtful that he would be able to receive it, and then went off to film the Citizens of Hollywood, which you'll see in my YouTube vids. They were very funny as always. One standout sketch in particular involved Rosie Truski and Leroy Small reenacting Sleeping Beauty with some dude whom, towards the end, proposed to his girlfriend right in the park (and I got it all on tape). That's true Disney Magic right there.

After I had run out of videotape, I decided to take in a couple rides, starting with Tower of Terror, Rock N Roller Coaster, Star Tours, and the Great Movie Ride (all in that order). I was closer to the Disney Animation Museum and Character Jamboree (because that's pretty much what it is now), and met alot of characters, which you'll see in the pics to follow. Some of these characters were really neat.

Finally, after catching the Funniest Citizen of Hollywood sketch (I was surprised Francis wasn't in this one because he's really good at it. In fact, I wasn't familiar with any of the Citizens), I saw the 9:00 show of Fantasmic where at the end on the boat where all the characters wave out to the audience, Pocahontas noticed me since she remembered me from the Animation Museum.

My next park assignment is the Magic Kingdom. This is going to be the toughest park to navigate through since it seems that everyone is an early bird when it comes to getting to the park, and the lines to meet the characters I want to are going to be astronomical. This is where I really really need Blixzit to cover for me in my 2nd cameraman duties because if you screw something up, you can't go back and fix it (I wonder how tired CMs are of being asked to take pictures, be they moving or still). I am almost tempted to pay for the high-speed internet access at this hotel, just to see why Blixzit hasn't shown up where I wanted to meet him at.

Day Five: It has been said that going to the parks and only experiencing one part of it does not comprise the park experience. I don't find that true at all. I already had my reasons for choosing the Walt Disney World Resort for my vacation needs, and they all lived at the Magic Kingdom.

I first discovered Disney's Fairies of Pixie Hollow meet & greet area on YouTube, and I knew that I just had to be there to meet Tinker Bell because I had a huge crush on her when I was very young. And because there was a movie with her name on it, it made sense to have her as an actual character. But first I had to meet some other characters to make my movie special. And boy, was Blixzit ever a character. That's right, I finally got to meet Blixzit after he rode the Haunted Mansion. He took some very good shots of the footage I wanted, and was particularly good in Pixie Hollow, as you'll soon see.

After we shot our primary character footage, Blixzit and I ambled over to Tomorrowland where everything is spectacular, except for Stitch's Great Escape. We didn't do that, instead we did the Monsters Inc. Laugh Floor, which I've always protested against because it's not a YouTube-able attraction. Since I had no need to video anything anymore anyway, we decided to take it in. It was corny, but likable. And even though I wasn't "that guy", I was right behind "that guy." While deciding against the "flying rockets in the sky" ride which I never get to do, we found the live Stitch show, and judging from the non-plussed reactions from the adults in the audience (including ourselves), none of us were thrilled with the singing and the dancing and the animated Stitch on the big screen.

I was close to the Storytime with Belle attraction, but the 3:00 Parade was about to begin, so we both decided to check it out. I felt the parades had a certain type of sameness to it, but since Blixzit rarely visits the Magic Kingdom, I let him see it. He decided to preserve it on his Flip Motion video camera for some website I believe. When the parade ended, we doubled back to the Storytime theater. Once again, I was not chosen for the role of the Beast. I've decided that this was my lot in life. I would never be lucky enough to take part in this kind of Disney Magic. There would be other kinds, true, just not this one. And I couldn't even ask how she chooses her Beast, for when the attraction was ending, it started to rain, and Belle made a beeline for the exit. And I made a beeline for the Grand Floridian.

I've never been to the Grand Floridian Resort & Spa before, mostly because I could not afford such a hotel (and in this recession, I can't see how anyone else can), but if you're going to eat dinner there, it's not so bad. My restaurant of choice: 1900 Park Faire. Reason: Cinderella now holds a buffet banquet there with herself, Prince Charming, Lady Tremain, Anastasia and Drizella. No Fairy Godmother in sight (we met her as a surprise en route from Adventureland going into Fantasyland). Cinderella and Prince Charming were a treat for the girls in the dining room, but it was the Tremain family who were the real cut-ups. I've always said Disney should make the best use of their comedic villains, but that doesn't bring Cruella DeVil back.

I decided not to take in Spectromagic because the rain during the afternoon pretty much put a damper on my evening. Even though I made the best use of the video footage I put together last night, my decision turned out to be a tactical error on my part.

Day Six: My mother recommended that I take in a showing of the Voices of Liberty over at the American Pavilion in Epcot. I had seen them before, all of them, in concert during the 4th of July week, but this show was better and more intimate. The only thing is the wait time. I gave myself plenty of time to wake up and not be first, and still I only arrive between 9:00 and 10:00 AM when World Showcase is not even open yet.

So what do I do until World Showcase opens? Ride Spaceship Earth, play myself in a video game, contemplate if 45 minutes is enough time to kill to meet the Character Spot, fill up on around-the-world beverages in Club Cool (there's nothing like the taste of carbonated high fructose corn syrup so early in the morning), ride Test Track, then mill about World Showcase until The Voices of Liberty perform their set.

For an Americana a-capella band, their sound is like that of the angels stirring the soul of an individual I wish I could have asked them if they had a CD. I had an audiotape of them performing, but I don't know if it is still good or not. I don't have a tape player so I can't check. They also have great costumes. I think I may have to come back again and videotape their entire run of sets (just what I need, another reason to go back when I can't afford it).

So since I missed Spectromagic last night, I figure I could go to the Magic Kingdom and catch it there. Going to the Magic Kingdom during the afternoon is not a smart thing to do, especially when it rains. For one thing, when the characters are due for the 3:00 parade, that's usually the last time you get to see them for the day. Other times, you'll get very blunt Character Guards who look at you like, "You're not the kind of person to be meeting characters. Why do you want to waste an hour of your life just to see Fairies? And then, there's the rain. It happened seven times. Rain kills outdoor entertainment and just makes for a sloppy sloppy day at the park. I was lucky enough to use the FastPass I had for Big Thunder Mountain Railroad. But it didn't help SpectroMagic get played anytime soon. And Belle in the Princess room told me I should make a wish on the star I had on my t-shirt. I wonder if she knows that the star is from Homestar Runner.

Anyway, the rain really killed my vacation, and ruined my tradition of ending the park with Spectromagic. All I've got left is Star Wars Weekend. If Disney tries to thwart me during Star Wars Weekend, that is it. I will surely never come back to this accursed state any more, and not because of living expenses > disposable income.

To Be Concluded...
"In an age of fads, copycats, and rapidly changing trends, you have chosen to stand out from the rest and be an individual. We applaud your courage and self-expression. Thanks for being a part of our show today. Don't ever change. The world needs more people with your spirit." - The Citizens of Hollywood

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